You can imagine how I felt, just the other day, when I picked up a copy of Time magazine and read that junk-food sugar is now being described by some health experts as a toxic substance!
The news broke in the Oct. 27 issue of Time, which reported that a California-based researcher – Dr. Robert H. Lustig in the Pediatrics Department at the University of California, San Francisco – had published a major study (in the journal Obesity) in which he found that the kind of sugar we find in soda pop actually works as a kind of nutritional poison when we consume too much of it.
During the Lustig study (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/oby.21371/abstract), 43 children from ages 8 to 18 were fed a special diet for nine straight days in which most of the sugar they normally ate each day was replaced by starch (from foods such as noodles, bagels, cereals, etc.).
The bottom line: at the end of the nine-day test, the kids involved scored much better on several key health indicators that measure the negative effects of too much sugar on the human body.
Example: The overall average blood-sugar level (which can be a risk factor for obesity, hypertension, diabetes and even heart disease when too high) declined by more than 50 percent.
Example No. 2: Some of the kids on the low-sugar diet went from being “insulin resistant” (a precursor of diabetes) to “insulin sensitive” – a clear indicator that the body is efficiently and effectively managing the daily intake of sugar.
Thank you, Dr. Lustig!
As many of you know, I’ve spent a lot of time during the past few years campaigning emphatically in favor of reducing our daily intake of unhealthy sugar from soda pop, candy and other junk foods.
As a matter of fact, cutting back on empty sugar calories (while also exercising more and eating more fruit) is the main goal of this year’s “61-Day Health Challenge” – the annual DMC-sponsored health-education program in which participants are asked to abstain from soda pop, fried foods and other junk foods during the months of November and December.
The Challenge got off to a rousing start on Oct. 30 (only three days after the publication of the Time story) . . . when dozens of Detroit-area community activists joined a mob of enthusiastic high school students and DMC employees in a crowded auditorium at the Children’s Hospital of Michigan.
Now well into its third week, the 2015 Challenge is already going great guns. With hundreds of Michiganders having sworn to obey the Challenge motto (“Less sugar, more steps, eat more fruit!”), the campaign to cut back on junk-eating during the holiday season is up and running at full throttle.
As a medical doctor and a hospital president who’s determined to help educate Detroit-area residents on the importance of good nutrition and the benefits to be had from frequent moderate exercise, I’m fired up as never before about the Challenge and its message for all of southeast Michigan.
Which is why I was so excited to open my copy of Time the other day and read a headline that said: “Sugar Is Definitely Toxic, a New Study Says.”
According to Time, that groundbreaking new study has now confirmed what we knew all along – which is that healthy living starts with healthy eating (and exercising)!
If you want to read the story for yourself and learn more about the crucial links between good nutrition and good health, you can go online at: http://time.com/4087775/sugar-is-definitely-toxic-a-new-study-says/.
To learn more about the DMC 2015 61 Day Health Challenge and how you can take part, just click on www.dmc.org/61days.